Tarkwa, July 29, GNA - Professor Daniel Mireku-Gyimah, Vice Chancellor of the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) has noted that Ghana's major challenge is how to exploit its several unexplored natural mineral deposits.
He said minerals such as iron, asbestos, limestone, marble, barite, mica and talc, silica, garnet, feldspar, sandstone, beryl, lithium, monazite, copper and kaolin, lie unexplored in several parts of Ghana. Prof. Mireku-Gyimah said these in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at Tarkwa on Wednesday.
He said the country's major challenge is how to exploit these mineral resources responsibly using appropriate tools and procedures to safeguard their quality and also protect the environment at the same time. "We need to prevent environmental damage, when exploiting the resources for national development and we must do it in an environmentally friendly manner" Prof. Mireku-Gyimah stressed. He said the socio-economic benefits of mining must be maximized and lesser known natural resources must be harnessed for the growth and development of the society.
Prof. Mireku-Gyimah said the nation could tap these resources effectively if it resourced UMaT, the only Mines, Science and Technology University in Africa, to carry out its mandate of producing world-class graduates, who will assist the nation to exploit and make these other untapped resources readily available and to contribute significantly to the development of the nation. He said the university has instituted a biennial UMaT International Mining and Mineral Conference which would begin from August 4 to 7 this year.
Prof. Mireku-Gyimah said 100 professionals and people from academic institutions worldwide have been invited to share their experiences and views in innovations in mining and mineral technology to help address the challenges of the country. He said presently, UMaT has a student population of 1,453 and 73 academic staffs making the ratio of academic staff to students is 20 to one. 264 within both the medium and long term, adding that, when this figure improves the student population will also increase to 5,000.
He said though the University was established in 1952 as the Tarkwa Technical Institute, its transformation into a full university and the increasing demand for admission requires that a new campus that can host over 5,000 students, lecturers, professors among others to be built. He said though the Wassa Fiase Traditional Council had donated a total of 26 square kilometre of land for the development of a new campus, the lack of financial resources was a major challenge now.
Thursday, 29 July 2010